5 Ways to Build an Online Community to Support a New Business Launch

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4. Actively seek out and nurture new relationships with like-minded people.

Here’s how I’ve tactically acted on these goals (particularly in relation to #4):

1. Build Connections on Twitter

I’m pretty fluid with who I follow on Twitter. I interact online so it’s impossible to keep up with more than about 200 people at a time. I regularly switch up who I follow – unfollowing large swathes of people and seeking out new potentially interesting people to follow, out of my regular circles.

2. Never Stop Learning Online

I’ve made a conscious effort over the past few months to try out a few new online courses, offered and run by people out of my usual circles. Not only have I learned some valuable new tips, I’ve met some interesting new people and can see the lay of the land from a different perspective, identifying where communities fit together by the shared ties and people involved.

3. Attend or Run Your Own Events

While I operate out of the UK, I’m making the most of attending events and running them too.

I’ve attended a tech-based event at the Google Campus in London (disappointing, cliquey and not very well-organized), and I’m running my own series of workshops at various venues around the UK. It’s opportunity to combine online networking with offline relationship building. This enables me to meet a wider variety of people than I usually do.

4. Aim big.

When launching a new business, one of the most effective ways to reach out and let people know that you’re in business is to aim big – plan an event, make some noise and do some good.

That’s the approach I’ve taken with the ONE K in 1 DAY event for Startup Training School. Not only have I secured some fantastic sponsors, I’ve been getting a good response from everyone I’ve reached out to so far and am excited at what might result from organizing a big event of this nature.

5. Reach out and ask.

Making “the ask” is something I’ve had to become intimately acquainted. I’ve started with “cold” emailing potential sponsors for ONE K in 1 DAY, organizing workshops around the country with the kind help of local women in business, seeking out beneficial partnerships for the school and students – alongside the ongoing ask of gaining new students.

As a fiercely independent kind of gal, I’ve never been that comfortable asking for help but I’m learning that being part of an ecosystem means it’s okay to ask sometimes, especially if you’ve done a lot of giving in the past.

When it comes to your location independent business (and life), which ecosystem(s) are you part of? And how are you actively nurturing them?

Connect with Lea on Twitter.

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Photo Credit: Benetton

Lea Woodward is a location independent entrepreneur and the creator of ONE K in 1 DAY. She is the founder of Startup Training School, an online school dedicated to empowering women with the skills they need to get their business online.

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